A few state FOIA and local open government news items selected from many of interest that we might or might not have drawn attention to earlier in the week:
Grant could help with West Virginia's records storage problem
PARKERSBURG (Nov 2, 2012) – A grant application for $17,000 will be submitted to the West Virginia Records Management and Preservation Board of the West Virginia Archives and History Division seeking help with records storage issues. … The RMPB was created by the West Virginia Legislature in 2000 to develop a system of records management and preservation for county governments. Funding for the grants program comes from filing fees collected by county clerks and deposited in the special Public Records and Preservation Account.
Visit NewsandSentinel.com for the rest.
IN gubernatorial candidates weigh in on making government more accountable
(Nov 2, 2012) – In the race to become Indiana's next Governor, Democrat John Gregg and Republican Mike Pence say they'd like to make Indiana government more open and accountable. But they're offering few ideas on how they'd do it. … The Indiana Coalition For Open Government posted those answers from the candidates online this week.
Visit TristateHomepage.com for the rest.
Candidates for N.C. governor support prying open some government records
(Nov 2, 2012) – The main candidates for governor say they favor taking some steps to make state government more transparent, but both avoid sweeping promises about opening up many more records than are already public. In recent interviews, Lt. Gov. Walter Dalton and Pat McCrory were generally in agreement when asked about disclosing more state employee personnel records, improving campaign finance reporting, making public ethics complaints and releasing their daily calendars. Both expressed concern about protecting employees’ and office-holders’ privacy while acknowledging the need to balance the public’s interest in monitoring state government.
Visit Winston-Salem Journal for the rest.
Greenwood (S.C.) school district refuses FOI request
(Nov 2, 2012) – GREENWOOD — Greenwood School District 50 is refusing to turn over information about the resignation of a high school volleyball coach to a newspaper. The Index-Journal of Greenwood filed a Freedom of Information Act request for the personnel file and emails concerning the employment of Emerald volleyball coach Gina Sargent.
Visit GreenvilleOnline.com for the rest.
Sarasota advisory boards dogged by Florida's costly Sunshine Law missteps
(Nov 1, 2012) – Government-in-the-Sunshine Law and public record missteps have cost Sarasota about $100,000 in legal fees since this spring and local attorney Andrea Mogensen's firm has garnered the majority of the money. The firm doggedly monitors local government for missteps and last week filed a suit claiming Sarasota's advisory boards have a widespread problem: Members conducting public business through private email accounts, text messages and social media.
Visit Herald-Tribune for the rest.
Have you ever used Utah's GRAMA? I’d like to share your story
(Nov 1, 2012) – People usually think of open government laws such as Utah’s Government Records Access and Management Act (GRAMA) , as tools for journalists. … While journalists use the federal Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), GRAMA and the open meetings act to hold elected officials and government agencies accountable, the laws were meant for the general public. Anyone can use those laws to see how government works, and to call bureaucrats and elected officials out when it doesn’t.
Visit The Salt Lake Tribune for the rest.